Monday, July 19, 2010

Totally TOS~ Travel the World~ Geography Module

And we're off!!! For the 2010-2011 TOS Crew Reviews have begun! :)
Travel the WorldThe first product we have been given to review is a Totally TOS product from The Old Schoolhouse Magazine, the 2010 June module from the TOS Planner/Module Series**. If the planner modules are new to you, I should explain that they can be purchased to accompany the planner or used one their own. They aren't really restricted to any particular time either, it is just a way to organize these "unit studies" that TOS puts out... 1 for each month of the year, but you can use them whenever they fit into your plans. They are targeted to the elementary ages, with "Expansions" to the topics that make them appropriate for High School use as well.

So... on with the review. Since so many families have vacation at *some* point during the summer, whether they are blessed with international travel, stateside road-trips, or more local "Staycations", it seems to be an opportune time to throw some basic "geography" learning into your bag.

That's where the June module, Travel the World** comes in. For $7.95 you get a geography unit study that covers the basics of "What is Geography?" with information on reading the globe and maps (including terms and coordinates), the continents and oceans. (BTW, did you know that regardless of what the Europeans though back in Columbus' time, the ancients of the Bible appeared to be aware that the earth was circular, if not spherical! You'll find out where, in the introduction to the the unit!)
  • The first 9 pages are informational themselves, but as a bonus they include hyperlinks to a plethora of knowledge on the net, from illustrations and information to videos and games. Although I excell at using search engines, I love the time-saving factor of having the links right at my fingertips!
  • Pages 14-31 are filled with hands-on activities : Word search, crossword puzzle, acrostic puzzle, coloring pages, lapbook components and more. My only disappointment here was that there were only coloring pages for 4 of the 7 continents. My kids (most particularly my 13 year old, interestingly enough) enjoy coloring/drawing when I'm reading to them(She remembers what she heard when she sees the visual that she worked on), so I like to have things that "go-along" with our current topic for them to utilize. It would have been nice to have a complete "set" of continents for that portion of information. ;) 
  • Pages 32-41 include copywork in both mauscript and cursive. I know that there are those that appreciate the inclusion of copywork. This is where I flunk out of Charlotte Mason, because I'm not consistent there, but I'm happy to know it's available for potential use with child #3 when he gets there. ;) 
  • The next 5 pages are "high school expansion" pages with more technical definitions, ideas for activities, challenges, and books to expand on the topic. 
  • There are a couple of pages with recipes, and then the final pages are answer keys for the activity worksheets. 
We definitely appreciated the chance to do a little geography review (Particularly with the 9 year old), and the puzzle pages had some challenging aspects for both of my kids.
All-in-all this was enjoyed by all, and I liked the fact that it was pretty much "pick up and go". Great for a little summer "School" on the side, and a super little "Refresher" course for those that need it. 

As always, I hope that this review helps you to make the best choice for your family and where to spend your homeschool dollars. Check out the TOS Crew Blog for more of my crewmates' opinions as well.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this/these item(s)/service for free as part of the TOS Crew Review Program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."

1 comment:

  1. Hello from a fellow TOS crew member. I'm spending a little time checking out some of the the other reviews. Great job!


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